The reconstruction meetings have just begun in Iraq, but already some Iraqi Americans are preparing to go home to participate in building a new economy and a democracy. Many have dark memories of life under Saddam Hussein, and concern about making sure that the future will be different. We talk to three Southern Californians with different ideas about how the process should work, how exiles should relate to insiders, and who, ultimately, should be in charge. Mazin Yousif, West Coast representative of the Iraqi National Congress, runs an engineering-design firm. Bassam al Hussaini, an engineer for the State of California, left Iraq 23 years ago after his older brothers were taken away by Saddam-s security forces. American-born attorney Sermid al Sarraf attended high school in Iraq, where one of his classmates was Uday, the son of Saddam Hussein.
- Making News: Baghdad Slowly Returning to Normal
In Iraq, Muslim clerics and American forces are bringing looting under control, but civic order is still tenuous. While this week-s meetings in Nasiriyah yielded no agreement on how to proceed, the Iraqi National Congress has begun to establish itself in Baghdad, where Ahmed Chalabi arrived Wednesday. The Christian Science Monitor-s Peter Ford says Iraqi-s gratitude for toppling Saddam has dissolved into calls for representative government.